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New-Car Sales To Decline 7 Percent Year-Over-Year, Still Resulting In Biggest Sales Month Of The Year, According To Kelley Blue Book
Cox Automotive New-Car Sales Forecast at 16.7 Million Units for 2018

IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- New-vehicle sales are expected to decline 7 percent year-over-year to a total of 1.57 million units in December 2017, resulting in an estimated 17.6 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), according to Kelley Blue Book.

Kelley Blue Book Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Kelley Blue Book)

"December should be the biggest sales month of the year, and despite our expectations for significant year-over-year declines, the projected SAAR of 17.6 million would be the third highest of the year," said Tim Fleming, analyst for Kelley Blue Book. "It's also important to remember that December 2016 was the strongest month in nearly 15 years, fueled by heavy incentives and year-end sales objectives. We're still expecting a year-end sales push from many manufacturers, which will translate into incentives and discounting, but since the sales objectives should be reduced from last year's peak, we are projecting slower sales than last December."

Key Highlights for Estimated December 2017 Sales Forecast:

  • In December, new light-vehicle sales, including fleet, are expected to hit 1,570,000 units, down 7 percent compared to December 2016 and up 13 percent from November 2017.
  • The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) for December 2017 is estimated to be 17.6 million, down from 18.1 million in December 2016 and up from 17.3 million in November 2017.
  • Retail sales are expected to account for 82.4 percent of volume in December 2017, down from 82.8 percent in December 2016.

After a record year of sales in 2016 and seven consecutive annual increases, Kelley Blue Book expects sales for 2017 to come in at 17.1 million, which is a 2 percent decrease from last year and the fourth-largest sales total in history. For 2018, Cox Automotive, Kelley Blue Book's parent company, forecasts new-car sales at 16.7 million units for the year.

Nearly All Automakers to Report Negative Sales Growth; Ford to Gain Nearly Percentage Point of Market Share

Kelley Blue Book anticipates nearly all automakers to report negative sales growth for December 2017. Out of the major manufacturers, Ford could have one of the better months, gaining nearly a percentage point of market share. Headlined by the new Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator, Ford SUVs will lead the way and could grow by as much as 10 percent. A new subcompact SUV, the Ford EcoSport, will be launched early next year to bolster the lineup and compete in a growing segment.

On the other end of the spectrum, Fiat Chrysler is poised to lose the most volume year-over-year, projected at a 12 percent decline. Some of the decreases are due to the discontinuation of several model lines this year, including the Chrysler 200, Dodge Dart and Jeep Patriot, which combined for nearly 12,000 sales last December. Fiat Chrysler also has been active in lowering fleet sales this year, which are down 25 percent, and continues this month to impact the year-over-year comparisons.


Sales Volume 1

Market Share 2

Manufacturer

Dec-17

Dec-16

YOY %

Dec-17

Dec-16

YOY %

General Motors (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC)

294,000

319,108

-7.9%

18.7%

19.0%

-0.2%

Ford Motor Company (Ford, Lincoln)

232,000

237,785

-2.4%

14.8%

14.1%

0.7%

Toyota Motor Company (Lexus, Scion, Toyota)

220,000

243,229

-9.6%

14.0%

14.4%

-0.4%

Fiat Chrysler (Chrysler, Dodge, FIAT, Jeep, RAM)

170,000

192,519

-11.7%

10.8%

11.4%

-0.6%

American Honda (Acura, Honda)

152,000

160,477

-5.3%

9.7%

9.5%

0.1%

Nissan North America (Infiniti, Nissan)

144,000

152,743

-5.7%

9.2%

9.1%

0.1%

Hyundai-Kia

106,000

116,658

-9.1%

6.8%

6.9%

-0.2%

Subaru of America

59,000

63,177

-6.6%

3.8%

3.8%

0.0%

Volkswagen Group (Audi, Volkswagen, Porsche)

57,500

64,439

-10.8%

3.7%

3.8%

-0.2%

Total 3

1,570,000

1,683,524

-6.7%

-

-

-

1 Historical data from OEM sales announcements

2 Kelley Blue Book Automotive Insights

3 Includes brands not shown

Full-Size Trucks to Be Second-Largest Segment for December 2017, Climbing as High as 14 Percent in Market Share

Full-size trucks should be the second-largest segment in the industry in December 2017 and its market share should climb as high as 14 percent. The Nissan Titan looks to have the highest year-over-year growth for the category, helped by incentives near $6,000 per unit. In addition, Chevrolet's Employee Discount for Everyone program could lead to a good month for its Silverado.

As has been the case for much of 2017, mid-size cars will have another rough month and its market share could drop as much as 1.5 percentage points. Overall market share for cars could end the year under 36 percent, down from 39.2 percent in 2016. As the industry heads into 2018, there are no signs the shift away from cars will slow down.


Sales Volume 1

Market Share

Segment

Dec-17

Dec-16

YOY %

Dec-17

Dec-16

YOY %

Compact SUV/Crossover

267,000

286,947

-7.0%

17.0%

17.0%

0.0%

Full-Size Pickup Truck

220,000

228,582

-3.8%

14.0%

13.6%

0.4%

Mid-Size SUV/Crossover

206,000

214,508

-4.0%

13.1%

12.7%

0.4%

Compact Car

170,000

190,034

-10.5%

10.8%

11.3%

-0.5%

Mid-Size Car

145,000

180,224

-19.5%

9.2%

10.7%

-1.5%

Total 2

1,570,000

1,683,524

-6.7%

-

-

-

1 Kelley Blue Book Automotive Insights

2 Includes segments not shown

There are 26 sales days in December 2017 compared to 27 sales days December 2016.  All percentages are based on raw volume, not daily selling rate.  

To discuss this topic, or any other automotive-related information, with a Kelley Blue Book analyst on-camera via the company's on-site studio, please contact a member of the Public Relations team to schedule an interview.

For more information and news from Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com, visit www.kbb.com/media/, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kelleybluebook (or @kelleybluebook), like our page on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kbb, follow us on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/kbb_com/ (or @kbb_com), and get updates on Google+ at https://plus.google.com/+kbb.

About Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com)
Founded in 1926, Kelley Blue Book, The Trusted Resource®, is the vehicle valuation and information source trusted and relied upon by both consumers and the automotive industry. Each week the company provides the most market-reflective values in the industry on its top-rated website KBB.com, including its famous Blue Book® Trade-In Values and Fair Purchase Price, which reports what others are paying for new and used cars this week. The company also provides vehicle pricing and values through various products and services available to car dealers, auto manufacturers, finance and insurance companies, and governmental agencies. Kelley Blue Book Co., Inc. is a Cox Automotive™ brand.

About Cox Automotive
Cox Automotive Inc. is transforming the way the world buys, sells and owns cars with industry-leading digital marketing, financial, retail and wholesale solutions for consumers, dealers, manufacturers and the overall automotive ecosystem worldwide. Committed to open choice and dedicated to strong partnerships, the Cox Automotive family includes Autotrader®, Dealer.com®, Dealertrack®, Kelley Blue Book®, Manheim®, NextGear Capital®, vAuto®, Xtime® and a host of other brands. The global company has 34,000-plus team members in more than 200 locations and is partner to more than 40,000 auto dealers, as well as most major automobile manufacturers, while engaging U.S. consumer car buyers with the most recognized media brands in the industry. Cox Automotive is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises Inc., an Atlanta-based company with revenues exceeding $20 billion and approximately 60,000 employees. Cox Enterprises' other major operating subsidiaries include Cox Communications and Cox Media Group. For more information about Cox Automotive, visit www.coxautoinc.com.

 

SOURCE Kelley Blue Book

For further information: Andrew Nicolai, 949-293-5241, andrew.nicolai@coxautoinc.com, Brenna Buehler, 909-225-4643, brenna.buehler@coxautoinc.com
Key Contacts

Sr. Public Relations Manager
Brenna Buehler
949.267.4781
brenna.buehler@coxautoinc.com

Sr. Public Relations Manager
Nichole Mrasek
404.568.6352
nichole.mrasek@coxautoinc.com  

 

  

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